The rapper was furious after discovering his brother, who was addicted to crack cocaine at the time, had stolen his ring - so he found a gun and decided to take revenge.
But he admits he was "terrified" after the shooting - and feared he would be locked up for life.
He tells Britain's Guardian Weekend magazine, "I went to someone's crib, someone's house, and got (a gun). Guns were everywhere. You didn't have to go far to get one. Just everywhere...
"I thought my life was over (after the shooting). I thought I'd go to jail for ever. It was terrible. I was a boy, a child. I was terrified."
Eric, who is now clean, didn't press charges and offered Carter an apology from his hospital bed after the shooting.